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Logging mature and old trees threatens U.S. climate goals

Forests

Logging mature and old trees threatens U.S. climate goals

 Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack on Thursday signed a memorandum to clarify the U.S. Forest Service’s direction on climate policy. The memo, "Climate Resilience and Carbon Stewardship of America's National Forests and Grasslands," follows a recent White House executive order highlighting the importance of conserving mature and old-growth forests on federal lands as a climate solution. The memo, which lays out “actions to restore forests, improve resilience, and address the climate crisis”, falls short in meeting the ambition outlined in President Joe Biden’s order on old forests and trees. Secretary Vilsack acknowledges the role that older trees play in absorbing and storing carbon and supporting biodiversity. But he fails to outline a plan for his agency to protect mature and old-growth forests and trees from commercial logging. 

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Environmental, public health groups to Senate: Act on toxic PFAS in drinking water

Clean water

Environmental, public health groups to Senate: Act on toxic PFAS in drinking water

Eighty-two organizations, including Environment America and U.S. PIRG, delivered a letter Wednesday to the U.S. Senate’s Environment and Public Works (EPW) Committee calling for comprehensive federal legislation to protect Americans’ drinking water from contamination by the toxic class of chemicals known as PFAS. The organizations, which hail from 30 states, asked the EPW Committee to designate all PFAS as hazardous substances, prohibit their use in firefighting foam, and direct the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to issue drinking water standards and stop the dumping of PFAS into our nation’s waterways.

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Over one hundred environmental and community groups urge U.S. Supreme Court to uphold federal clean water protections

Clean water

Over one hundred environmental and community groups urge U.S. Supreme Court to uphold federal clean water protections

Environmental and community organizations from across the nation Friday urged the U.S. Supreme Court to uphold the longstanding scope of the Clean Water Act and reject industry attempts to eliminate federal clean water protections that have kept families, communities, and rivers and lakes safe from pollution for decades. Environment America and several of its state affiliates are among the 113 groups signed onto the brief filed by Natural Resources Defense Council and the Southern Environmental Law Center, in support of the Environmental Protection Agency in the case, Sackett v. EPA.

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Natural Resources Committee to consider strengthening roadless area protections

Forests

Natural Resources Committee to consider strengthening roadless area protections

The U.S. House Natural Resources Committee Subcommittee on National Parks, Forests, and Public Lands will hold a hearing on Wednesday to consider the Roadless Area Conservation Act. Introduced in 2021 by Reps. Ruben Gallego of Arizona and Diana DeGette of Colorado, this bill would reinforce the landmark 2001 Roadless Rule, which was enacted under the Clinton administration. Indigenous leaders and conservation advocates expressed support for the Roadless Area Conservation Act because it will establish more permanent protections for critical forests, including the Tongass National Forest in southeast Alaska.

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Conservation groups welcome Biden order on Climate Forests

Forests

Conservation groups welcome Biden order on Climate Forests

On Friday, President Joe Biden will issue an executive order that directs federal agencies to conduct an inventory of mature and old-growth forests on America’s federal lands so that policies can be adopted to protect them. The administration framed the move as a key strategy to store carbon and address climate change. 

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New study ranks Phoenix in top ten U.S. cities for solar

Solar power

New study ranks Phoenix in top ten U.S. cities for solar

Phoenix ranked no. 7 in the U.S. for total installed solar photovoltaic (PV) capacity in the latest edition of the Environment Arizona Research & Policy Center’s report Shining Cities: The Top U.S. Cities for Solar Energy. The report, which is the eighth edition of America’s most comprehensive survey of installed solar PV capacity in major U.S. cities, designates Arizona’s capital city a ‘Solar Superstar,’ meaning it boasts 100 or more watts of solar PV capacity installed per capita.

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Nation’s environmental leaders urge Governor Newsom to save solar

Solar power

Nation’s environmental leaders urge Governor Newsom to save solar

SAN FRANCISCO – As the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) considers gutting the state’s bedrock solar program, a broad coalition of national and state environmental organizations delivered a letter Wednesday to CPUC commissioners and Gov. Gavin Newsom urging them to immediately issue an alternative that allows rooftop solar and battery storage to continue to grow. The letter was delivered by 70 organizations, including Environment America, Environment California, Greenpeace, The Nature Conservancy, Sierra Club, Environmental Working Group and the Center for Biological Diversity.

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Environment America submits nearly 16,000 comments in support of restoring protections for Tongass National Forest

Wildlife & wild places

Environment America submits nearly 16,000 comments in support of restoring protections for Tongass National Forest

With the comment period for a proposal to protect 9.2 million acres of Tongass National Forest ending Monday, Environment America submitted 15,941 comments to the U.S. Forest Service (USFS) as part of a national effort which generated more than 100,000 comments in favor of protection. I

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